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The final lines (added by the Church) celebrate the end of the story. This present chapter is challenging and difficult, perhaps the darkest part of the book. But it is not the end of the tale. There is more to come on earth and in heaven. Jesus has won the victory by his death and resurrection. Even from this present darkness it is possible for many, much of the time, to raise our eyes and hearts to heaven, to look forward in hope, to sing God’s praise like Paul and Silas in prison and to give praise and glory to God, our Father in heaven.

Psalm 99

The Lord is king; let the peoples tremble!
    He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!
The Lord is great in Zion;
    he is exalted over all the peoples.
Let them praise your great and awesome name.
    Holy is he!
Mighty King, lover of justice,
    you have established equity;
you have executed justice
    and righteousness in Jacob.
Extol the Lord our God;
    worship at his footstool.
    Holy is he!

Moses and Aaron were among his priests,
    Samuel also was among those who called on his name.
    They cried to the Lord, and he answered them.
He spoke to them in the pillar of cloud;
    they kept his decrees,
    and the statutes that he gave them.

O Lord our God, you answered them;
    you were a forgiving God to them,
    but an avenger of their wrongdoings.
Extol the Lord our God,
    and worship at his holy mountain;
    for the Lord our God is holy.

The final line of the Lord’s Prayer is not part of the original prayer given by Jesus, but was added by the Church. The final line returns us to the beginning: to praise of God and to the kingdom of God. We seek God’s help in the hard things of our lives and then, at the end of the prayer, the camera lens moves back again so that we see everything against the wide panorama of God’s creation, God’s time and God’s purpose.

The Psalms were the prayer book of Jesus and they shape the vocabulary of praise in every generation of God’s people. In Psalm 99, we proclaim that the LORD (whose name is holy) is king and his kingdom is founded on justice and fairness.

When we are shaken and stirred and our lives turned upside down, the Lord’s Prayer gives our lives fresh focus and perspective. Yours is the kingdom is a declaration of faith and hope and victory.

Write a prayer or psalm focusing on the kingdom, the power and the glory.

Lord God, mighty king,
you love justice and establish equity;
may we love justice more than gain;
and mercy more than power;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Prayer after Psalm 99

Name as many countries as you can. Use a globe or map to find where they are in the world. God’s Kingdom isn’t a country or a place. God’s Kingdom is a Kingdom of justice and fairness that is greater than all the countries of the world. Sing “He’s got the whole world in his hands” together. Can you make up some new verses for it?
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Reflections from the Church House Publishing Pilgrim Journeys: 40 Days of Reflections on The Lord's Prayer written by Steven Croft are copyright 2019, 2020 The Archbishops’ Council and used here with permission. Full details of both resources are available on the Church of England website.

Bible readings are taken from The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2020 The Church of England, All rights reserved.

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